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The 100 (Season 5)

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Adam Lenhardt, Mar 14, 2018.

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  1. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    The100_S05_002.

    Previous Season Threads:
    Season 1
    Season 2
    Season 3
    Season 4

    Held back even longer than usual, "The 100" will begin its 13-episode fifth season on April 24th at 9/8c, following an all-new episode of "The Flash". Assuming they stick to one episode a week, and don't skip any weeks, it will run through July 17th.

    Here's the (pretty damn epic) Season 5 trailer:


    The fourth season finale ended with a six-year time jump, as the meltdown of Earth's remaining nuclear plants blanketed the planet with another sustained wave of lethal radiation that made nearly the entire surface of the planet uninhabitable.

    In the face of this calamity, Octavia Blake seized control of a large bunker designed to withstand the end of the world. She permitted Skaikru and the eleven surviving Grounder clans to each select 100 from within their number to survive in the bunker. Under the terms of her edict, the twelve hundred survivors were to set aside their tribal allegiances and unite as Wonkru. At some point during the time jump, massive amounts of rubble buried the entrance to the bunker.

    Raven, Echo, Monty, Harper, Bellamy, Murphy and Emori made it to space, taking refuge from the hellfire of armageddon below in what remains of the Ark.

    One two people survive on the surface: Clarke, her body having been enhanced to withstand levels of radiation that would kill even most of the other radiation-resistant Grounders, and Madi -- a young Nightblood with an inherited resistance to the radiation who also found herself trapped on the surface. They have been alone for together for over half a decade.

    Until a transport ship from elsewhere in the solar system lands at the one fertile speck of real estate left on the planet...

    Some casting news:

    Episode titles:
    • 5x01: Eden
    • 5x02: Red Queen
    • 5x03: Sleeping Giants
    • 5x04: Pandora's Box
    • 5x05: Shifting Sands
    • 5x06: Exit Wounds
    • 5x07: Acceptable Losses
    • 5x08: Secret Weapon
    • 5x09: Sic Semper Tyrannis
    • 5x10: The Last
    • 5x11: The Dark Year
    • 5x12: Damocles - Part One
    • 5x13: Damocles - Part Two
     
  2. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    HOLY COW is that a trailer!
     
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  3. David Weicker

    David Weicker Producer

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    Starts tomorrow.
    Can’t wait
     
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  4. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    Excellent premiere. It only inched us incrementally forward from where the time jump left off last season, but the A plot filling in the blanks of how Clarke survived those six years was a captivating standalone story.

    The new actress playing preteen Madi was fine, but the little girl playing six-year-old feral Madi was phenomenal. I figured, given how young she still is, that Clarke had to have found her within a week or two of Praimfaya. But, no, she survived two months on her own as basically a first grader. And it speaks to both the writing and the performance that I believed it.

    The interesting thing about their arc together is that over the six years, Clarke has civilized Madi and educated her and guided her away from the primal creature that hunted her like prey. But now, in their first encounter with other humans, Madi sees Clarke transform instantaneously into that primal creature. Were the prisoners destined to be enemies, or are they enemies because Clarke decided they were before they had a chance to prove otherwise?

    The way the prisoner ship and the Ark tied together was a elegant, efficient bit of storytelling; the writers didn't need the eight survivors on the Ark on the ground until the prisoners arrived to create conflict. But it was also the arrival of the prisoners that (presumably) will provide the means for them to return to Earth. The dynamics on the Ark are interesting, too, given that we started with five Skaikru, one Grounder, and one mutant. Now they definitely see themselves as one team, though Murphy has managed to alienate himself once again.

    It looks like next week's episode will tell the story of what happened in the bunker over the six year time jump. The little glimpse we got at the end of this week's episode did not look promising. After that, we'll presumably be off to the races.
     
  5. David Weicker

    David Weicker Producer

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    This did not disappoint.

    The first fifteen minutes - WOW

    I love how the trek across the 'desert' started with triumphant Wanheda, and finished with broken Clarke

    The final shot - WOW.

    More later, but I really enjoyed this, and can't wait for next week (and the week after that, and the week after that, ...)
     
  6. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    This is one of the most underrated sci fi shows on; the core concept is so radically different from everything else that we get on TV; and they have crafted a very unique universe
     
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  7. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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  8. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    Unfortunately, I made the mistake of hopping on the internet for five minutes between "The Flash" and "The 100" and had the big death spoiled for me.

    Despite that, it was another great hour of television. The six years that elapsed had weight and consequence. When the hour started, we had the last gasps of twelve civilizations and two cultures. When the hour ended, we had the makings of a new civilization and new culture. The world in the bunker six years later was brutal and barbaric, but Octavia did what Jaha told her to do: she made death the enemy. The colosseum was horrific, but there were still people alive to fight six years later so it must have done the job.

    It served another purpose, too: Octavia wasn't just keeping her people together and united, she was training and hardening an army. If you break the rules, you only survive through sheer Darwinian selection. Assuming they do make it out of that bunker, they're emerging as a warrior culture that has fought daily for the last six years. If I were the prison transport, I would take the threat very, very seriously.

    As for that death:
    It was the perfect ending for Jaha. His character went off the rails with the A.L.I.E. storyline, but they brought him back around to the character he was in the first season. I loved him telling Kane that he was glad he convinced him to go along with Wonkru. I loved that he was dying and kept his focus on doing the most good for the greatest number of people. I loved his final lessons to Octavia on leadership. And of course Isaiah Washington acted the hell out of it.
     
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  9. David Weicker

    David Weicker Producer

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    I always pivot between Clarke and Octavia as my favorite characters.

    I know they’ve disagreed in the past, but the one thing I never want to see is the two of them truly pitted against each other.

    They both have been hardened (understatement), but they have always maintained a core of goodness/humanity. It would be a major misstep if that is taken away.
     
  10. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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  11. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    "Start with how the world ended."
    "Which time?"

    Last night's episode was a perfect example of why I'm thrilled this show is coming back next year. All of the conflict and drama was earned, and the final beat of the episode paid off the rest of the episode beautifully.

    The prisoners are awful people, but Clarke was the one who initiated hostilities. And in the end, the only reason our protagonists are still alive is because Bellamy opted not to take the most brutal path.

    Murphy being uncharacteristically selfless only for it to immediately bite him in the ass is always delightful.

    The various storylines are starting to converge. I can't wait until Wonkru makes it out of the bunker.
     
  12. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    This is a really well structured season. Some of the best SciFi on TV
     
  13. David Weicker

    David Weicker Producer

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    After the first two awesome episodes, and the very strong third episode, the last two have just been OK.

    But I have to admit the Michael/Fredo scene last night was Chill-ing.

    And the human shield was impressive.
     
  14. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    The human shield element was WHOA. I think the last two episodes have been a lot of setup, but I can already see a lot of potential payout.
     
  15. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    The interesting thing for me is Octavia as the pivot point. She became a very specific kind of leader in the bunker, because that's who she needed to be for Wonkru to survive. But what was needed in the bunker is not needed on the surface. Bellamy, Clarke, and Indra all realize it, but it doesn't seem like Octavia realizes it.

    After all they went through in the first four seasons, Clarke and Bellamy are actually pretty smart, capable, talented leaders. They've learned the hard lessons and come out the other side wiser for it.

    But if Bellamy and Clarke and Charmaine came up with a balanced resolution that worked for all sides, it'd be a pretty short season. So it's dramatically right that Bellamy and Clarke are sidelined and that Octavia is now faced with her own hard lessons.

    There's also the fact that Octavia is responsible for Wonkru, Bellamy is responsible for the six people that went into space with him, and Clarke is responsible for Madi. Right now, their interests are largely aligned. It'll be interesting to see what happens when they aren't. Octavia talks a good game about what she'll do if Bellamy's actions make him an enemy of Wonkru. But she spent his life sacrificing everything for her. For the majority of both their lives, it's been them against the world. I highly doubt that she'd be able to deliver the death blow, if the occasion arose.

    Underlying the tension over who gets to keep the valley is the fact there are only roughly 1200 people left in the human race. That is already a pretty severe genetic bottleneck. You look at the prevalence of genetic disease in other populations that faced severe population bottlenecks in the past (like Ashkenazi Jews seven or eight centuries ago), and that becomes a major long-term problem. Every fertile person who dies from here on out decreases the species's chances of rebounding from back to back nuclear calamities. They're already a mere ten generations away from everybody being related to everybody.

    In other words, it's not just a question of who wins this conflict. It's a question of whether there will be enough survivors on the other side for any of this to matter.
     
  16. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    The subplot with Madi being at risk was interesting; I hadn't thought of it until now, but as the last surviving natural nightblood, she's poses the same risk to Wonkru that a Romanov would have posed to the Soviet Union: a potential bridge back to the old ways.

    It was also a way to expose some of the fracture points between the various relationships. Niylah, who was Clarke's lover, is willing to expose Clarke's daughter, with potentially lethal consequences, to protect the solidarity of Wonkru. Gaia, who has been the loyal priestess at the Blodreina's side for six years, instantly reveals herself to be still loyal to her faith and the rule of commanders linked by the succession of the Flame. Madi, who has an image of Octavia in her head from Clarke's stories, decides to trust that the person Clarke described is still in there, rather than the woman who has raised her for the past six years.

    One of the recurring themes of this season is that Clarke learned the brutal lessons of the past seasons a little too well. Her unwillingness to trust, her unwillingness to put her faith in the decency of others has created problems for her and for those around her. She knows the threat that Octavia poses, but she forgets (or chooses to dismiss) the things that made Octavia Octavia before she was the Blodreina.

    Another fracture point: Octavia tries to make Bellamy choose between her and Echo. But just as Wonkru has become paramount in Octavia's loyalties over the past six years, the survivors on the ring have become paramount in Bellamy's loyalties. If someone had a gun pointed at Octavia's head and at Echo's head, I'm not sure who he'd choose. But because it was Octavia making him choose, he chose Echo. And Octavia is not so far gone that she won't bend a little to keep her brother in her life.

    On the other hand, Octavia having Cooper shoot down enough of the defectors to sell Echo's infiltration was stone cold. Madi better tread carefully, Wonkru or not.

    One of the best parts about the time jump is that all of the groups have learned different things. So they have lessons to teach each other again. It's given the show new life.

    I love the chemistry between Murphy and Emori. Nice to see them starting to bury the hatchet and work together again. I want little lobster-handed babies from those two. The divide between the two of them is an organic and interesting one: Emori had always been a loner because circumstances forced her to be; she was exiled from her clan because her mutation marked her as genetically defective. First only her brother would accept her, and then only Murphy would accept her. But she found camaraderie up on the ring, a whole group of people that would accept her, that she could help and rely on help from. Having faced rejection her entire life, that was something deeply powerful to her. Meanwhile, Murphy has always been a loner by nature. He doesn't do well in groups, he doesn't join, he doesn't participate. He's distrustful of leadership, uneasy with the idea of allegiance. When it was him and Emori against the world, he thrived. But once they got up on that ring, Emori fit in and he didn't. He resented it, and he feared it.
     
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  17. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Director

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    My favorite beat in last night' s episode was the quick reaction shot after Murphy through the rock and set off the powder keg that had been brewing all episode. That look said: I know what's about to happy, and I deeply regret that it couldn't be avoided. I don't think he ever bought into Diyoza and Kane's utopian vision for the valley, but I think he wanted to.

    I've mostly found Lola Flanery's performance this season merely adequate. But man did I get chills when she woke up, having bonded with the Flame, and used her Commander voice for the first time. The character felt like a completely different person, which is not an easy thing for a child actress to pull off.

    The best thing about this season is that it's playing of the consequences of surviving the previous four seasons. Everything that allowed these characters to survive this long is what makes them uniquely unprepared for the circumstances in which they find themselves:
    • In the bunker, Blodreina needed to be uncompromising to keep Wonkru going. But on the surface, Wonkru needs a leader who can compromise, and Octavia is unable to make that transition.
    • Madi knows that her best chance at survival is to march into Wonkru and hope they'll rally behind her. But Clarke, unwilling to take that risk, instead guarantees that they'll be fugitives.
    • Bellamy, who started an unnecessary war of his own against the Grounders by participating in a massacre, is so desperate to avoid this one that he poisoned his own sister and further hardened her on her course.
    • Murphy, Raven, and company are so used to the inevitability of war that the idea that Wonkru and Diyoza might have negotiated a peace never even occurred to them.
    The conflict this season is all character-driven; faced with a scarcity of resources, what's left of humanity has created its own conflicts. And there is very, very little margin for error if the human race is to survive at all.
     
  18. mattCR

    mattCR Executive Producer
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    You know, this is a show that really just works for me, but damn are we dark this year! Still really enjoying it and no way to really know how this is all going to work out.
     
  19. Adam Lenhardt

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    Next week's episode flashes back to the "Dark Year" in the bunker. After Octavia's actions in last night's episode, there's a lot of pressure on it to explain why she's this far gone now.
     
  20. David Weicker

    David Weicker Producer

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    What a terrific finish.

    This was a very inconsistent season. It started out incredible, and then took a nose dive and stayed there for several episodes.

    Once they finally went to war and had the 'Dark Year' episode it got much better.

    And it got a bit dusty at the end - I will miss
    Monty, (and Harper), so Bob's your uncle.

    But
    end of Book One???


    In the final analysis, it was a good season.

    Looking forward to Season Six
     
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